Thursday 27 March 2014
Premierleague.com rifles through the annals of the Barclays Premier League to find significant events.
Frank Lampard scored four times as Chelsea emphatically beat Aston Villa to maintain the pressure on Manchester United at the top of the Barclays Premier League.
Lampard’s haul took him to 151 goals for Chelsea, who had beaten Portsmouth 5-0 three days earlier, and also made him the club’s third-highest scorer ever. It was the second time the Blues had scored this number of goals during the season following a 7-2 triumph over Sunderland in January.
The victory left Chelsea one point behind the leaders with six matches remaining and was achieved without top scorer Didier Drogba, who was on the bench after suffering a knock at Fratton Park. It also stretched Villa’s recent form to one victory in five fixtures.
Lampard put Carlo Ancelotti’s side ahead in the 15th minute when he turned in Florent Malouda’s cross at the far post but Villa levelled 14 minutes later when Ashley Young set up John Carew to score.
Chelsea restored their lead just before half-time when James Collins brought down Yuri Zhirkov and Lampard converted the penalty.
Three goals in 12 minutes midway through the second half settled the match. Malouda made it 3-1 in the 57th minute when he powered home a cross from Zhirkov. The France winger was brought down by Richard Dunne, and Lampard scored his second spot-kick.
Lampard turned provider with a pinpoint pass into the path of Malouda, who netted his second. Substitute Salomon Kalou scored the sixth after a pass from Nicolas Anelka and Lampard completed the rout in the first minute of stoppage time from inside the penalty area.
On a day when John Terry was captain for a record 325th time, assistant manager Ray Wilkins said: “We have to keep winning. This is just another three points, although it is good to boost the goal difference. I tried to keep them going and even at the end we were pressing for eight.”
Chelsea could not stop scoring and beat Stoke City 7-0 and Wigan Athletic 8-0 as they won five of their last six matches to win the title by a point from United. In so doing they set a record for the number of goals scored in a Barclays Premier League season at 103.
The following week they completed the Double by beating Portsmouth in the FA Cup final.
Villa also ended the season strongly with four wins from their last seven fixtures to finish in sixth and secure an UEFA Europa League place.